All Blog Entries,  Comedy

Luca Lounge & Kickstarter

Carol Hartsell and I are teaming up with Luca Lounge and we need your help! If you’ve ever wanted stage time or have endured watching a show in a crappy space, you definitely know why this is important for NYC comedy. Please consider donating anything from $1 to $3,000 to help us realize our $8,000 goal and get this Kickstarter project funded. Click here to donate & review a list of what your pledge will get you (besides a better space, of course).¬†Below the video¬†are more details if you’d like to read more about what we’re doing and why.

What We’re Doing:
We are transforming a leaky party space in the back of a bar called Luca Lounge in the East Village into an independent theater space for comedy. We are partnering with the owner to fix up the space and program cheap or free comedy and storytelling shows there 6 nights a week.

We have already been producing shows in the space, working around the inevitable roof leaks whenever it rains and now we want to take it to the next level.

With extensive roof repairs, the installation of stage lights and a revamped sound system, production equipment and backline essentials, as well as new tables and chairs, we can create an artist-run hub for NYC’s alternative comedy community.

No more begging club owners to let us try our shows out there, only to have them gouge our friends and fans with high cover prices and drink minimums. No more apologizing to audiences and performers for a sub par room where the laughter dies before it begins and you run the risk of the occasional electrical shock.

A great room for great comedy, that respects the artists and the audience. That’s what we’re building.

Why We’re Doing It:
We’re comedians and producers ourselves who have already put on great weekly stand up shows at cool independent spaces that have since closed like Rififi, Mo Pitkins, Ochi’s Lounge and Comix. Every time a venue closes, a huge number of quality comedy shows are forced to scatter and regroup elsewhere, wherever they can find a willing space. Sketch and improv have UCB and the PIT. It’s time for New York’s unrivaled stand up scene to start putting down some roots too.

The best comedy is smart, reckless and exuberant, and it deserves a venue that embodies the same adventurous spirit (except with regards to roof maintenance).

At one point in time, downtown was home to several venues that offered alternative comedy several nights of the week (Rififi, Mo Pitkins, Ochi’s and Luna Lounge) and they have all since closed. We want to rebuild the space, the spirit, and the community.

Why You Should Support Us:
Over the last two years, those of us involved in the Luca Lounge Comedy Project, as we just dubbed it, have made a commitment to work together and prove ourselves, both to the owners of the venue and the audiences we’ve brought into it.

We currently have 13 shows that call Luca Lounge their home and we’ve had some of the best comedians in the country grace our rickety stage, including: Janeane Garofalo, Fred Armisen, Bill Burr, Judah Friedlander, Reggie Watts, John Mulaney, Lizz Winstead, Donald Glover, Kurt Metzger, Joe DeRosa, Kumail Nanjiani, Baron Vaughn and more.

But, more importantly, we’ve showcased hundreds of up-and-coming New York comedians and we will continue to focus on fostering their work first and foremost.

In short, you should support us because we are true comedy believers who want to support the work of our community, not just our own.